A Shirt That Fits – Testing Mass Couture

Tonight I ordered my first made-to-order dress shirt from Mass Couture.

Mass Couture is a German-based online business with factories in China that sells made-to-measure clothing for department store prices. It is also a network marketing business if you choose to become a member as I did. Membership gets me reduced prices on merchandise, and if I make a little money in the deal then it’s all good.

This is pretty exciting to me because if this turns out well it could be a very attractive option for transmen and transwomen to get made-to-measure clothing without the angst of visiting an unknown tailor (they do generally tend to be highly gender-conservative) or locating a trans-friendly tailor, and without the time, travel and expense involved. The clothing line is based on menswear, but everything is available in men’s and women’s measurements, and there are women’s flats available in the shoes catalog.

That’s right, they make custom fit shoes, too. Ladies, are your eyebrows raising yet? Fashion flats (so you’re not so tall) to fit your feet (how difficult has that been for you so far? Guys and gals?).

Short of dresses and high heels, you’re covered.

Hmmm… Maybe I should have ordered shoes first instead… ?

In any case, I will be giving you the blow-by-blow of my experience with Mass Couture from tonight’s order to my impressions of the final product. I will also ask my favorite tailor to tell me what she thinks of the quality of the shirt I receive and pass on her observations to you. Photos will be shared.

The first stage of the process tonight was to take measurements, specify the details of my custom shirt, place my order and pay for my initial order. The initial order includes the cost of the made-to-order dress shirt ($19.90) plus a one-time setup fee for my personal account ($20.00) to be applied to all future shirt orders. There’s also shipping ($9.90) and a payment processing fee ($2.00) that PayPal charges.

Since I have signed up as a Member and paid a membership fee, my costs are in reality a little lower than yours would be as a Customer, but not by much. I am giving you Customer costs for each step you would go through in the ordering process. If you’re curious, you can see my personal Mass Couture website here.

The process of ordering the shirt seems a little backwards in that I ordered a custom shirt in a fabric of my choice, but I will receive a swatch kit with my first shirt which will include fabric swatches and a measuring tape. Hence, my first shirt choice is to stick with white and was measured with my own tape until I can get the swatches. Here’s a page showing exactly how to take the measurements they want for the shirt.

Naturally when I went to get my sewing measuring tape I could not find it anywhere. I wanted to get going with my new shirt so I opted to use my Myotape.

The Myotape is a great solution in particular for those of us who take our measurements by ourselves for various reasons, either for sewing, for monitoring physical progress from hormones, diets and/or weight training, and other related applications. I bought mine a few years ago from Bodybuilding.com where I also buy almost all of my sport and food supplements — protein powders, vitamins, electrolyte drink mixes, and so on.

With measurements in hand I next went to my Mass Couture website, logged in and was taken directly to the shirt specifier page.

This image is in German, but yours would be in English.

Here I built my shirt exactly the way I wanted it, choosing my fabric and color, front placket, back treatments, pockets, cuffs (including French cuffs), buttons and buttonhole options, thread colors, shirt bottom cut, and even got a matching handkerchief, all for the same price. I saved the finished shirt by giving it a name and posting it to my “Wardrobe,” entered my measurements and my shipping address, and then sent the shirt to my shopping cart.

In the shopping cart I was given a breakdown of charges and the final cost for the shirt, shipping and fees. There is a one-time setup fee for each item you order, whether it is for shirts, jeans, shoes, belts, suits, etc. which establishes your own personal account with your specific measurements for each item. Your measurements are then kept on file so that from now on all you do is order your items according to your specifications for materials, colors, monogramming and other details. Again, for a custom fit dress shirt the setup fee is $20.00, but the fee varies for some other items. You can also change your measurements within a two-inch range for no charge, so if the fit is a little off you can remedy the size before your next order. They impose the two-inch boundary so people don’t order shirts for their friends without paying a fee for the friend to have their own account.

Once I made the decision to buy I proceeded to the PayPal checkout. As soon as I made my payment I was sent an email with two invoices — a Product invoice and a Service invoice. Nothing more to pay, these are just for my records.

Now it should take 3 to 4 weeks for my shirt to reach me. When it gets here I will give you a complete report, with photos.

Stay tuned — this could get exciting!

BB

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Twitter
  • Google Bookmarks

5 comments

  1. Matthew C. KrinerNo Gravatar says:

    thanks for the write up

  2. christian louboutinNo Gravatar says:

    I just wanted to leave a swift comment to thank you for your post! I really like your blog site!!! Would you mind terribly if I put up a backlink from my site to your site? Keep up the tremendous work!

  3. BroderickNo Gravatar says:

    Thanks, a backlink is fine.

  4. TrellNo Gravatar says:

    I was going to place an order today for my shirt but I will wait for your upcoming report. Its been 11 weeks, Have you received your shirt yet?

  5. BroderickNo Gravatar says:

    I did receive the shirt and then got incredibly busy with a new job and other responsibilities.

    There’s a lot I want to post about the whole Mass Couture experience and I will be getting some help from a friend who is a tailor whenever we both have time to do photos and measurements and all. We want to help you avoid the mistakes I made in my measurements (most important – DO NOT do your own measurements if you can get someone to help you!), and give you an honest evaluation of the shirt’s quality.

    I currently have a packed schedule that’s all over the place, but once I can settle into a set schedule again – hopefully in another week – I have every intention of getting back to TransGentry – I will not abandon it! Thanks for your posting, and your patience.

Leave a Reply